Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Whining and Barking to Greet the Dawn

Complete relaxation

          I got up four times during the night, 1:30 am, 2:15, 4 am and 5:45 am, because Gizmo was barking, yipping, high-pitched whining or making a sound that apparently only I could hear.  This was, by now, rather odd behavior for him. 
            Each time I got up, shuffled down to his cage and looked inside, hoping that the dog was not in pain or urinary discomfort.  Each time, Gizmo looked up at me as if to say, “I assume you have a reason to be here?”
            He did not greet me joyously or with even the least energy.
            I went to my fallback position at such times: I said NO in no uncertain times and I rapped on the cage loud enough to disturb him, but not intense enough to wake up Grace.
            Then he became quiet and perhaps just a little morose.  A half hour later I was awakened from a deep sleep by more high-pitched whining.
            I got up around 6:30 am and took him out for a walk, which was greeted joyously.  Oddly enough, on the designated piss path above the pool, Gizmo merely sat down and looked at me with interest, but as if he didn’t know what he was supposed to do there.
            Then he dashed to the side door, where he waited for me to hook up his leash.  When I opened the door, out he pranced, ears flapping, legs almost high stepping, a big grin on his face.
            Dogs, who usually have no shame, also have no memory or reaction to waking me four times in the middle of the night for no reason at all.  Today, I shall be tired and needing of a nap.  Gizmo will be his friendly, leaping, tonguing, energetic self. 
            I wonder: Can we teach any dog to apologize?

“A man once told me that his dog was half pit bull and half Poodle. He claimed that it wasn't much good as a guard dog, but it was a vicious gossip.”  Stanley Coren

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